Having a healthy relationship with parents is vital as it makes it easier to communicate with them. Yet, there are occasions where difficulties can arise when camp staff are trying to build a strong and healthy relationship with them. There are many different reasons why this could happen, but the most commonly it is miscommunication. Parents might think the staff have said one thing when truly they actually meant something else.
But when using the Splento App, camp employees may be surprised by how better their relationships with parents can be.
In this blog, we will discuss:
- Why is it important for camp staff to have a healthy relationship with the children’s parents?
- Why is it difficult to create these relationships?
- How can the Splento App help?
Why is it important for camp staff to have a healthy relationship with the children’s parents?
There are many reasons as to why it is important to have a healthy relationship – but primarily, a good relationship makes communication easier and everyone feel better.
Easier to communicate
Communication is key to any type of relationship – it’s what helps us understand what we each want. The first step of creating a healthy relationship with a parent is through communication, and at first, this can be a challenge (personalities!), but once established, further discussion is usually easier. And the more communication there is (in whatever form that takes), the better everyone will usually get along together.
Giving bad news
When it comes to communicating the good of what a child has been up to, it’s very simple to do as every parent loves to hear the amazing news. However, sometimes, staff members will have to give bad news, as accidents, and behaviour issues, can happen, and that is something no one really wants to do.
Why? The nerves of not knowing how a parent will react after hearing bad news is very high. Although some parents might act in a calm matter, there are a rare few that will show their frustration.
This can be helped by having a healthy relationship. If a child has injured themselves by spraining an ankle, for example, parents will still be worried but are less likely to snap if they have a strong relationship with the summer camp team.
One of the most important benefits of summer camps is that the children finally have the chance to gain some independence. Summer camps give children the opportunity to deal with certain activities and situations alone. Yes, they might make a few mistakes, but they will learn from them and this helps them grow.
Having a healthy relationship with the parents can make sure that the children stay on track. The reason for this is because parents won’t feel the need to be calling, texting or emailing 24/7 trying to find out what their child is up to. With a healthy relationship, parents will know and trust the camp to send an email, or some photo updates, when they have the chance to.
A good, communicative relationship between parent and camp can help parents to feel safe with who they sent their child to. Every healthy relationship will have trust, and trust rarely exists without a parent feeling their child is safe.
Why is it difficult to create these relationships?
No matter how much we want certain things to run smoothly – sometimes difficulties will arise. This can happen when trying to create that healthy bond between a summer camp employee and parent. Most times these issues are caused by parents being worried, and this is usually down to a lack of communication, and concern about the unknown.
A healthy relationship with a parent starts before a child enters the summer camp. Weeks in advance, emails and forms will be sent back and forth. This is where parents will begin their journey of trust with the summer camp employees. During this stage, it is important to clearly state how the staff will communicate with the parents when their child is at the summer camp.
This information is crucial, and if it’s not clear, miscommunication can happen, resulting in parents believing something else was said. If a summer camp plan to send an email every Sunday to include some photos, it’s important that this message is clear. It is also important that it is done! Otherwise, you will have some upset parents on the phone.
Lack of confidence
Some employees, although great at making the child enjoy their time, lack confidence when it comes to communicating with parents. This is more challenging, as it is something from within each person, and being nervous around talking is something that everyone can feel – no matter how confident they usually are. One way to help is by taking time to conduct staff training; there are many good courses that teach how to communicate with people, especially the difficult ones.
Confidence exercises can also be practised with staff; and likewise, listening skills are equally important to develop.
Many millennial parents do not want to be labelled as this term, as it is seen as a negative label. ‘Helicopter parents’ try to be a part of their child’s life 24/7. Although parents like this are rare, there are a few, and they often act like this because they are worried about something that might happen to their child.
Parents like this can be very stressful to handle, as they may end up calling every day to hear what their child is up to. Or they might be emailing the summer camp throughout the day. And it is likely that they won’t receive a response straight away, creating difficulties.
How can the Splento App help?
The Splento App has many features to help summer camps. And when it comes to creating healthy relationships, the Splento App will do just that. The app is developed for staff to take photos at every opportunity, will upload the photos and send them – automatically – to each correct parent.
With the app, communication with parents becomes slightly different. Staff can now be snapping photos throughout the day for parents to see. Parents are less likely to be calling and interrupting their child’s day, as the app allows them to see what their child is doing without constant direct communication.
This means that there is more daily connection with parents, but without the need for messaging and/or phone calls.
Parents benefit from receiving regular updates as to what their child is getting up to, and the children benefit from being left uninterrupted, to get on and enjoy their day. The app always respects the users’ privacy; parents can only see a photo if their child is in it, for example.
With these (and many other) features, parents are able to see all the excitement their child is having, and this, in turn, helps develop that healthy relationship with camp staff. If parents can see what is happening in real-time they have less reason (in their minds) not to trust the camp staff, as they can see their child is having fun.
If you think improving parental/staff relationships will benefit your camp this summer, then check out what else the Splento App can do for your summer camp.
Or to get some first-hand experience, book a demo with us today.